Author: saundralparker


I haven’t been in my craft room since getting back from the wedding, and frankly, haven’t had much ambition to accomplish much.  Today is the day that’s all going to change.  I have to make several cards, and at least two videos.  I want to do a haul of the things I bought when we toured Brutus Monroe, and I need to send them a thank-you card for their kindness.  I also have several cards I need to make for friends, and am behind on trying new techniques, so will be attempting to do that as well.

I apologize for being out of the loop on social media and hope you’ll understand that the wedding and travel, plus getting home to a neurotic dog….took a lot out of us.

Rich is scheduled to have his hip replaced on October 31st, so I need to get as much done before that as possible….so that’s my plan.  I’m going to get serious about videos that need made and cards that are overdue to friends and family.

I’ve been spending time reading and resting, and now it’s time for action….Did that sound sincere?  I hope so…At least I hope I can convince myself to get serious about it….



Simon Says Stamp Kit, September, Look for Rainbows & Arteza Everblend Marker Color Blending Chart + Discount

I wanted to show the September, 2019,  Simon Says Stamp card kit that is still available….The kit is called “Look for the Rainbows,” and I made a card using the things that were provided in this kit.
The kit’s value comes from the large, Look for the Rainbows stamp set that’s normally $26.99, and the 3D Sizzix Texture Fade (embossing folder) called Kaleidoscope (link: ) that sells between $4.99-$7.99. You also get a pad of lightweight designer paper and six pages of foil paper, plus cardstock and envelopes, enamel dots and crystal gems.
I made a 5 x 7″ card base with a white Recollections heavyweight cardstock from Michaels.
I used my Arteza watercolors set of sixty, that I had decanted from tubes into plastic snap shut containers, video attached.  I used a flat brush to paint the Seaweed color on one of the designer papers that was included in the kit, to color the entire sheet green. I really didn’t need to color the whole sheet, but did. I cut this piece to 4 7/8 x 6 7/8″ to layer on top of the folded layer then rounded the corners. I colored the edges of the white card base with an apricot color, then set it aside to dry along with the green layer.

You can receive a 10% discount on all Arteza products by using this code by October 20, 2019, CraftingforAlmost Everyone6.


Everblend Art Markers (Set of 120):


Everblend Art Markers (Set of 120):
Watercolor Paint – 60 Colors (60 x 12ml/0.4 US fl oz):


Don’t forget, Arteza has a YouTube page as well…

I do not receive any monies from Arteza, only the products to use on my channel..

I stamped the pattern and sentiment from the Look for the Rainbows stamp set in Brutus Monroe’s Detail Black ink (Link: then used Ranger clear embossing powder and heat set it. This raised embossing powder will hold the alcohol markers within the lines when heat set. It’s a great way to ensure you don’t make too many mistakes while coloring.

One of my viewers found a YouTuber that was kind enough to share a project she did with the Arteza Everblend markers. Her name is Mary Polanco and her YouTube channel is Mary Polanco Designs. Here is the link to it.
Mary made charts to show which Arteza markers blend well together, so all you need to do is color in the color chart that Mary provided so that you can easily see which colors blend with which. She made a chart for both their 60 count and 120 count sets. Here is the link to Mary’s color charts..–76f_AWAqwwyg4zxxpp02I6B84pxZw8?usp=sharing   (If you copy and paste that link on a new tab, you’ll see that you can choose between the 60 or 120 count color charts.)
I used a variety of Arteza markers to color with, and used Mary’s color chart to help me determine which would work best together. After coloring the image, I decided I needed something more in the background, so used an old All Night Media #369J stamp that adds dots (splotches)…It’s an oldie but a goodie..I used Distress Ink in Mowed Lawn for the ink. I glued the green painted layer to the base, then added the embossed layer that was mirror cardstock from the kit and rounded it’s corners with the Kadomaru Pro corner rounder (Link to it.….That layer was cut to   4 1/4″ x 6 1/4″ and cut my top layer to 4 x 6″..I added tear tape to the back of the top layer with wet glue and added some green ribbon to the side and tied a single knot with a small strip of the same ribbon….I wrapped the length of ribbon around to the back of the top layer and cut the knot so it looks more like a bow. I added fun foam under the top layer w/ tear tape sized 3 3/4 x 5 3/4″ so it would add more dimension. I used a peg stamp bird from The Secret Garden Set link: I added Wink of Stella to the flowers and birds for more glitter.

Rehearsal Dinner Table Decor, a Great Way To Put Strangers at Ease

My nephew’s rehearsal dinner was held at an Olive Garden and was a very informal affair. Most of the people in attendance did not know each other and by putting these jars on the tables and pulling some pf the lips and other props out to share, we were able to get people to start interacting, and by the end of the evening, we have some really fun memories, and great photos.

But first, I wanted to share some cards I got from friends that I’ve been collecting…

I bought the stamps I used from Just for Fun and just went to their website and couldn’t find it. I kept getting an error code, so you might not be able to find the stamps…If you find them, the stamp I used were the Stamptangle Sea Kelp Large #E2794. I put cardstock scrap of white paper in the MISTI and stamped the sea kelp with an old Stampin’ Up ink called Really Rust (retired). After stamping the image, I took a waterbrush and rubbed the ink that was left on the door of the MISTI and colored in the kelp. Make sure you hold the paper in place so you can restamp over your image once you’ve colored it in, as you’ll be able to redefine your lines when you stamp it one more time.. I mention the Baren I used for putting pressure on the door of the MISTI, and you can find them at I buy the economy baren that they sell for around $10. I trimmed the sea kelp so there were no white lines left, then used the waterbrush and rubbed it back into the ink and brushed the edges of the sea kelp so the edges are inked after trimming them.. I bought jars with a straw in the lid..I removed the straw and replaced it with a grid that I bought at Michaels. II couldn’t find the grid inserts online at Michaels.) I did find them at Amazon and here’s the link. The jars I bought on clearance at Dollar General… I took the lids off the jars and took the images I had stamped and ran them through my Xyron link: with the inked image face down so the face becomes the sticker. I’m putting these inside the jar so I wanted them to be sticky on their fronts. Once they are sticky, carefully place them on the inside of the jar and then rub them with the end of a paint brush or other tool that will help adhere them to the jar side. I bought the mouths and other fun things for the guests at the rehearsal dinner (very casual event) to use to lighten the mood and help strangers feel more at ease around each other. I have to say, this worked so well, we couldn’t believe how much fun the guests had playing with these. Links to them at Aliexpress: (this was the set of wedding inspired props and they were not attached to the sticks when they arrived, and the materials they sent didn’t adhere them well) and (these were the mouths, and came already assembled and they stayed assembled…People loved these and used the hats and other props from the wedding set along with the mouths. I can’t stress enough if you have a group of people who don’t know each other and your rehearsal dinner is casual, these will really help to break the ice.


Yesterday, we basically did nothing…so tired from the trip, and getting in so late the night before..or the morning of…Anyway, we just wanted to sleep…so we did.  Today, we went to a movie and lunch with friends.  We saw the new Brad Pitt film, “Ad Astra.”  If you want to waste money and time, this is the movie for you.  It’s basically supposed to be a psychological look into Brad Pitt’s character, but is so repetitive and boring, each of the four of us were napping throughout.  That’s never happened to us before, and we go to movies together at least twice a month…I thought maybe I was overly tired from the trip and being overly critical of the movie…As soon as it ended, our friend said he wished we could have walked out halfway through….we told him he should have suggested it, as we thought it was terrible….So bad, and not worth the two hours you could waste if you choose to see it.

Rich is finally allowing a few of the photos he’s taken to be shown.  The first was taken the day after the wedding at the beach.  Their dog had several wardrobe changes, and this was his first look.  We loved the look of this photo…..and the second is one of the posed shots for the couple to possibly use for their newspaper photo….If I know them, I think they will choose the one on the beach…..M&M Wedding Pic.jpgM&M Ollie Beach.jpg

I can’t make any promises that I won’t be uploading more wedding photos….because apparently I’m obsessed.  Such a sweet couple, and so happy with each other.  The dog’s name is Oliver, and he was Mike’s gift to Melissa when she graduated from the Paul Mitchell Hair Academy in LA….I wish you could see the tie he’s wearing..The light blue with blingy bow was a gift from Aunt Sandy and Uncle Rich and the tie he’s wearing is a blue, brown and white checked long tie, but we didn’t have a chance to tighten it so you can’t see that it’s a real tie..It was so hot that we didn’t do the wardrobe changes as effectively as we could have…but in the end, has Melissa put her finger behind his neck and pull the neckties up so they were in the right spot…Love how her head is tilted toward Mike…that’s all the photographer’s doing…that Rich, he’s quite the guy….


Our nephew’s wedding was lovely…Intimate and touching..Rich, as you probably know, acted as the photographer.  We spent the day before the wedding touring the aquarium with the bride and groom, deciding which photos they wanted taken, and where.  Ultimately, some of the spots were changed, as it was so hot, and the outside photos for the women in the bridal party ended with everyone getting bitten by mosquitos..and sweating…Not the look you’re going for in a wedding.. Luckily, they were the first to be photographed, so they had over an hour to sit and relax..and have some water to stay hydrated, haha..  We originally planned a sunset photo of the bride and groom outdoors, but decision was made by the bride and groom to skip it to avoid heat stroke…I’m telling you, it was hot out there.  At one point, the bride’s father and brother both pointed to my forehead and said “there’s a huge mosquito on you..”  YIKES!! Every woman’s dream, to have a huge bug bite in the middle of their forehead and itching like crazy while trying to keep the flow of photographs going…

I wish you could have seen what Rich called his Bible…He had gone to every website on weddings and printed every list a photograph had offered for possible photos.  There were at least nine typed pages of photos.  On Thursday afternoon, I sat with the bride and groom, and we went through the lists, one by one, and the eliminated ones that they didn’t care about, which was so helpful.  The time between the wedding and reception was absolutely crucial, as that was when we were taking all of the formal photos of the entire party, the parents with the bride and groom, and ones of just the bride and groom..We were given about ten minutes at the venue before we were told to move so they could put up dinner tables, and so every second counted.  It turned out that ten minutes was more like three, as the aquarium woman started taking down chairs and putting up tables immediately after the ceremony.  It made taking those photos a time crunch, and ultimately, the bride decided to move to another local, which was so much smarter.  It also took us away from the guests so we could do the posed photos and not be interrupted.  The guests were supposed to be filling out the wishes (remember that video I made?) while the photos were being done, and the guests were also free to roam the aquarium.  There was supposed to be one of those lines you see in theaters, that stop people from proceeding into another area, but someone took it down, so the guests started finding their way to us.   And then the photo requests started.  We had such a short time for everyone to rest, and this was it .  Our nephew has planter plantar fasciitis (a painful foot condition), and really would have benefited from sitting down at that point… I only had a few more photos of friends that they wanted individual photos with, and then the gates opened up.  It was so funny, that I eventually went to the rest of the guests and offered individual photos with the bride and groom, because if they later found out others had them and they didn’t, I thought some people might be offended.  The bride and groom were so gracious and smiled through all of it, even when they were probably crying in the inside from pain….Luckily, with less than fifty guests, it wasn’t horrible, and they made it back for their introduction to the reception with maybe five minutes to spare.

The ordained minister was the bride’s brother, and he did a great job for never doing anything like this before, and especially, on his sister’s big day.

The most difficult part of the wedding was lighting, as the aquarium promised us they would have track lighting on during the wedding so you’d be able to clearly see the bridal party.  I really wish that they had been more honest with us about the lighting, as there was one set of track lighting about halfway between the bridal party and where the guest seating ended, so it was almost impossible to have time to focus on the bridesmaids as they entered, since they went from dark to light in an instant.  We’d decided the day before, that if the lights weren’t better, Rich would hold his hand up, the bridesmaid would pause long enough for him to take a quick photo and proceed.  The aquarium “wedding planner” told the women not to stop or look at Rich as they approached.  Anyone who has ever been in a wedding knows that’s their one chance for a nice photo of themselves, so we said, “stop and look right at Rich with your biggest smile,” and they did….Such nice friends of the brides, and so helpful.  One of the bridesmaids had read somewhere that you should bring a large Hefty garbage bag with you, so if the bride ever needed to go to the restroom, one of the bridesmaids would put the back of her gown in the Hefty bag so the gown is protected from its surroundings, and also giving that bridesmaid the opportunity to hold the front of the dress off the floor…Such a smart idea (and probably one most brides wouldn’t want to think about, but it really was helpful…)  Still, the bride said going to the restroom with an entourage was kind of embarrassing, and I’d bet it was..

All of the things I made for the wedding were well received, and I’m happy I helped…Now it’s up to Rich to get his photos edited and ready for the public.  I’m attaching one photo, but keep in mind, it’s not one of Rich’s, it’s one a guest sent….I’ll be sure to upload a couple of Rich’s in the near future.  Thanks for bearing with me through the wedding and all of the wedding related videos….Can’t tell you how much it’s meant to me to get all of the well wishes and good lucks from all of you…DSC_3986 (2).JPG

Alcohol Marker Comparisons on Different Cardstocks, Plus Arteza Discount

Below you’ll find all of the products used, plus the Arteza discount codes.

Arteza 120 set Coupon code is CraftingForAlmostEveryone5 which is valid until Sept. 20, 2019 (good for 10% off all of their products), and I was just given a new code that will be good until October 20, 2019 for all products as well…It is CraftingforAlmost Everyone6 You can use either code until Sept 20th, then after, you’ll need to use the one that ends in 6…


Don’t forget, Arteza has a YouTube page as well…

The cardstocks I used were:
Neenah Solar White Classic Crest 80 lb. Amazon $43.32
Georgia Pacific 110 lb at Walmart $5.48
Recollections Heavyweight 110 lb from Michaels on sale it’s normally $10

Neenah is the cardstock that I colored the fish on I wanted to make sure that you could see the same image colored with five different types of markers.

The ink I stamped with is from Brutus Monroe and is Detail ink and here’s the link to it:

I didn’t have the same colors for all of the markers, so you’ll need to compare the blending from marker family to marker family..

Studio 71 markers set of 48 Available at Michaels Link:
Sharpies: Set of 72 on Ebay Link:
Bic Mark Its: Amazon set of 48 link:
Touch Five: ebay set of 168 link:
Arteza 120 set Coupon code is CraftingForAlmostEveryone5 which is valid until Sept. 20, 2019 and CraftingForAlmostEveryone6 is good until October 20, 2019 on all Arteza products. After September 20th, you’ll need to be sure to use the code ending in 6 to receive your discount.

I stamped the Arteza markers on all three types of cardstock so you can see if there is a difference between the cardstock you use when using alcohol markers. I found that the Georgia Pacific cardstock seemed to blend better than the others did. Neenah seemed to work the worst for me…Recollections seems to be middle of the road in performance…So if I was looking for a white cardstock to blend markers on, I think I prefer the Georgia Pacific. I’ll leave it up to you to decide which you think works best.


I have to be honest..The closer I get to my nephew’s wedding, the more exhausted I’ve become .  It’s not that I have anything left to do, I just feel overwhelmed, and think I am probably in a flare..  For those of you who might not be familiar with rheumatoid arthritis, there are times when the disease decides I need to rest, and I have to put myself on steroids (prednisone), to be able to do basically anything.  It’s frustrating, but I’m lucky there’s something I can take that will put my disease into a mini remission.
I have so many videos I need to make, and I’m just too exhausted to make them, and a flare also make me have muddled thinking, so if you’ve noticed how scattered I sound in videos, it’s because of that.

So tonight I’m starting the prednisone burst, so by the wedding next weekend, I’ll be feeling a lot better.  We did deliver all of the things I need to get to the wedding that we can’t take on an airplane to one of my sister’s friends.  I can’t tell you the relief that gave us.  Don’t get me wrong, we still have a ton of things to take with us, but at least the rest of the things that are fragile will make it there in one piece.  You never know if it rides under an airplane…and I didn’t want the shadow box to get broken before they get to see it..